The History Behind Wiggins Fine Books
Wiggins Fine Books began as a result of my curiosity about the books and maps encountered in the course of researching my Wiggins family roots that go back to the 1640’s in Jamaica, Long Island.
As a member of the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association of America I am committed to upholding the highest ethics in the trade. I hold membership in the Southern New England Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association and am its immediate past President. Bookselling as my business was born out of filling in for the owner at a local bookshop. But, when I attended my first New England Book Auction, I truly developed a taste for rare books and antique printed materials. The wonderful community of people involved further sparked my enthusiasm. After attending just a few auctions, I was hooked. I started exhibiting at book fairs and selling books online. I quickly realized that the book fairs were the most exciting. I began displaying at small regional book faIrs about ten years ago and have more recently taken on the challenge of shows in Boston and New York City. As a strong proponent of encouraging the next generation of booksellers and curators, in 2015 I co-founded the Northampton Book and Book Arts Fair held annually for its first four years at the Smith College Campus Center in Northampton, Massachusetts. This year’s fair has been postponed due to the pandemic, with future fairs to be promoted by my colleague Mark Brumberg. The next fair will be held at the newly renovated Community Arts Trust building in downtown Northampton. The fair attracts printers, booksellers, paper makers, print dealers and artist book designers from the Northeast. Wiggins Fine Books is located in the charming village of Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts, just steps from galleries, restaurants and the world famous Bridge of Flowers. Visitors are welcome by appointment.
It’s All About the People
There’s nothing like the face to face contact with young collectors, rare book curators, dealers, and people just walking in off the street to explore a book show.
I enjoy the “people” parts of my business the most; meeting other collectors and enthusiasts, sharing finds, and introducing newcomers to all that the world of antique print has to offer. Whether I’m catching up with old customers or making new friends, every book show is an opportunity for building and strengthening the rare book community.
The Northampton Book and Book Arts Fair
The 2020 Sixth Edition of the Northampton Book and Book Arts Fair has been postponed due to the pandemic, with the next fair to be held at the Community Arts Trust building at 33 Hawley Street in downtown Northampton. The fair has established its niche as a new and vibrant holiday event and attracts in excess of 600 visitors who experience the varied offerings of some 40 antiquarian book dealers, printers, paper makers, print dealers and artist book designers. The fair attracts visitors from throughout the region. Each year the fair has presented a keynote talk by an accomplished bibliophile or book arts personality. Past speakers have included Richard Minsky (founder of the Center for Book Arts in New York City), Ruth Rogers (Curator of Special Collections of the Clapp Library at Wellesley College) and Nicholas Basbanes, noted author and bibliophile.
My Shelburne Falls gallery, with its eclectic mix of collectible books, antique maps and prints, may contain your next treasure!
Let’s set up an appointment and find out!